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Author Topic: VFX, VFX, VFX (My experiences with the DA VFX Editor)  (Read 6086 times)

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July 16, 2009, 09:24:07 PM

This is the first in a short series about my trip to Bioware, and the various tools that they showed us there.

As one of the builders who went to Edmonton this past week to take a look at the Dragon Age toolset, I had a chance to play with and poke at the VFX editor on the last day of the event. The timing was a bit rushed, as we were all engaged in creating the modules that Bioware had tasked us with, but in between the last minute business, I was able to have a little seminar from the lead VFX artist for Dragon Age, and I came away just a little impressed with what they had to offer.

Making a decent looking VFX is very easy. I was able to make ones that I could have used in game and been happy with in about five minutes, perhaps less. Everything is controlled out of the object inspector palette, and you can pick a whole series of libraries and options. Here is where the difficulties come in: there are a ton of libraries, and they aren't always labeled in such a manner as to make things easy. The Dragon Age wiki will likely clear things up, once it appears.

This being a professional level toolset, unlike the NWN1 toolset, there are rather a large number of options you can tweak to control the creation of the GFX. Whether it bends towards a target, spins as it is born, accelerates away from the spawn location, changes colour from birth to death, and so on. If you can think of something to do with a VFX, it's probably possible in the VFX Editor.

I'm hardly a expert at the system, so, I'll leave the actual work of describing all of the features to someone else, but I can try and answer as many questions about the VFX Editor as come up, so on that score, fire away.

Linked from the bottom of the post is my example of a "Five Minute" VFX. It's animated, so that the individual puffs of flame swirl around, as does the entire structure, while at the same time being pulled slightly towards an emitter target. I, unfortunately, do not have an animated copy of the image. Fireball-ish VFX.
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